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Thread: Neoprene Vest Disagreement

  1. #41
    Junior Member axegothic3's Avatar
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    Even on milder chilly days the difference with and without the vest is noticeable, you would not be able to convince me that a neoprene vest is not one of the most important tools for your dog(more important than heaters in the boat)!

    "start in loving a dog, and understanding it, bye and bye you'll know how to love all the world!"

  2. #42
    Administrator Chris Atkinson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BobOwens View Post
    Thanks for all the comments(I read them all)- I'm glad I'm not the only person who thought wearing s vest is crucial to our dog's safety. The main issues my vest will fix will be the fit and durability. Some of the ideas that were thrown out are great and need to be considered. My first prototype will be in before Christmas. We'll break it in hard and take what we learn to the drawing board. Next round will go to a bunch of pro trainers to put on multiple dogs and a few hardcore hunting guides. Should be exciting!

    I think the main thing we, as hunting dog owners, need to be aware of it that our dogs are designed to go all out! They won't quit until you do and that's how we want them! We have to have a head on our shoulders, recognize the dangers of cold water & frigid temperatures and protect the dog at all costs. I'd be crushed if something happened to him and I could have prevented it!

    These vests are a great tool and as long as they fit properly, they can allow you and your dog to remain in the field doing what you enjoy. Thanks for the comments, ideas, and two cents.
    Hi Bob,

    I'd love to talk with you live on the phone sometime soon.

    Please let me know when you are available. Maybe we can chat this week.

    Thanks, Chris
    "Determining and applying the criteria for when and when not to use correction is the essence of the art of dog training. I make a distinction between a mistake and a lack of effort." - Mike Lardy - Volume I "After Collar Conditioning"

  3. #43
    Senior Member JDogger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hogw1ld View Post
    At the bottom of this post is something that Rick Hall posted on duckhuntingchat. Unlike Rick, I had to have my wife add bar stitching at the ends of the new seams. The "glue" held, but the neoprene wanted to tear behind it.

    My pup appreciates it:


    The only time it doesn't fit snug all over is if she is sitting kind of hunched over:



    Not much you can do about that. We hunt in some nasty stuff. I keep her out of the water unless she is working. Never had a problem. I forgot her vest once and could tell a huge difference in her comfort level.
    Thank you for cross-posting the Rick Hall post. I want to try to tailor-fit my dogs vest, for a good fit. I will do some googling on modifying divers wet suits. I look forward to Bob's research and subsequent posts. JD
    Last edited by JDogger; 12-03-2013 at 07:29 PM.
    One cannot reason someone out of something they were not reasoned into. - Jonathan Swift

  4. #44
    Junior Member Taterboy's Avatar
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    Having been a diver and scuba diving instructor for many years I will offer a few comments. Generally Mgatc sumed up the benifits of a wet suit very well. It should be recognized that wetsuits were designed to be used underwater and they are the most effective in this environment. Above water they are less effective as an insulator. Specifically one of the draw backs of a wet suit on land is the material covering of the neoprene holds water and then becomes a very effective evaporative cooler. Due to the evaporative cooling effect of the material many suits designed for intermitten water use such as wind surfing and surfing use a "skin" outer. These suits have no or limited material covering the body core and exhibit a smooth latex type surface that sheds water immediately thus reducing the evaporative cooling effect.

    My ideal neoprene dog vest would have a cordura material covering the neoprene on the chest and belly for protection and a smooth skin surface over the ribs and back. Varied thickness of neoprene should be considered such as thinner more flexible material around the neck to allow a snugger but not constrictive fit, this approach could also be used around the belly and front legs. Gussets with velcro adjustments around the belly and neck similiar to the velcro cuffs on a jacket could be used on the neck and belly. These may be new ideas for a dog vest, but it is stuff that has been used in wetsuits for active sports for years. Come to think of it I can't think of anything more active than my dogs.

    Chris

  5. #45
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    image.jpg
    Great fit on the RiversWest. Old boy Chucks vest and other rubbers not so good

  6. #46
    Senior Member Rick Hall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JDogger View Post
    Thank you for cross-posting the Rick Hall post. I want to try to tailor-fit my dogs vest, for a good fit.
    I want to thank you, too, as I'd lost my copy of that in a computer crash and been too lazy to retype it. (Have a new Cabelas vest on hand and plan to shoot some illustration when I tailor it.)

    I believe it misleading to talk about "trapping" water in any wetsuit, unless, perhaps, it includes boots and mitts. What wetsuits and properly fitted dog vests do without those is slow the transfer of heat-sucking raw/outside water across the dog's body. The looser the vest (or more holes/handles), the more raw water transfer it will allow. The better the fit, the less heat will be pulled from the dog by raw water transfer.

    As for Pup not being able to shake off what water is retained under the vest, I've found that a non issue, as it plainly drains out of the vest, and Pup is drier sooner, thanks to his body heat under the vest. I'm reminded of this daily in season, when after the last bird is retrieved, we pack up, make the ten minute boat ride out and I remove the coyote's vest at the boat house to find the fur under his vest warm and nearly dry, while the fur outside it is still cold and wet.
    If you think I'm wrong, you might be right.

    (And to see just how confused I really am, join us in my online blind at: Rick's 2012-2013 season log)

  7. #47
    Junior Member Hogw1ld's Avatar
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    Rick,

    You're little tutorial was a lifesaver. Thanks. As you can see, my pup is quite lean. I had to take a ton of material out of the belly and shoulders. We're in our second hard season and the seams are holding up great. I'll probably have to do it again before next season. The vest has taken a beating on barbed wire, ice, etc...saved the girls some stitches for sure.

  8. #48
    Senior Member thelast2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BobOwens View Post

    I think the main thing we, as hunting dog owners, need to be aware of it that our dogs are designed to go all out! They won't quit until you do and that's how we want them! We have to have a head on our shoulders, recognize the dangers of cold water & frigid temperatures and protect the dog at all costs. I'd be crushed if something happened to him and I could have prevented it!
    That about sums it up, if the young man you referenced in your original post was the actual owner and wasn't just passing on story's of others, he doesn't need to own dogs. To have two dogs succumb to hypothermia is just negligent.
    Jesse

    HR SHR JR'S GUNNY DOG "ERMEY"
    SR JR'S MARSH MANGLING MINDY
    JR'S LNR THICKET THRASHING TRIXIE

  9. #49
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    just my thoughts but...I too am a little unsure of vests. Overall I think they do the job intended. I do use them. However, where I have some skeptical thinking is NOT in the water. I live in northeast SD..it is cold here. As I type -10 with a -37 windchill. My dogs have never really had much issue with making a retrieve in cold water. Where SD is famous for is the wind. So when the wind blows as the dog sits and waits for next retrieve, I've actually noticed my dog shiver more with the vest than without. I'm assuming they are not allowed to dry off properly therefore the icy winds zip through. Just my observations.

  10. #50
    Senior Member John Robinson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vergy View Post
    just my thoughts but...I too am a little unsure of vests. Overall I think they do the job intended. I do use them. However, where I have some skeptical thinking is NOT in the water. I live in northeast SD..it is cold here. As I type -10 with a -37 windchill. My dogs have never really had much issue with making a retrieve in cold water. Where SD is famous for is the wind. So when the wind blows as the dog sits and waits for next retrieve, I've actually noticed my dog shiver more with the vest than without. I'm assuming they are not allowed to dry off properly therefore the icy winds zip through. Just my observations.
    I think the opposite. I believe the waterproof-windproof neoprene blocks the wind and protects the dog better than just his wet coat. I wouldn't worry about a dry dog too much either way. I believe the only good argument against using a vest is the hooking up on a submerged stick or something, where I hunt that's not an issue, but it could be for those of you who hunt stick ponds.

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